I would like to critique my experience on my first Carnival on Carnival Spirit to Paridise or so I thought. It was one incident after another, with Carnival Cruise line.
Let me add that we have taken several cruises on Princess, Royal Caribbean, MSC Cruise line. I have never experienced, the unacceptable operations, planning and initial service this ship displayed.
My first experience with this cruise was to wait in line outside the San Diego terminal for over ninety minutes (this is after arriving at 1100 for a 1200 boarding) only to get inside to wait again for approx. 45 min, to wait again in another line to be signed in for your room and documentation and room card. At this time I was given a number only to wait again to get into another line to take pictures before boarding. I became very sick while waiting in line and I was allowed to not take the welcome aboard picture and board. The entire process would have resulted in over a three and a half hours before getting on the ship to find our 15 day cruise was now turning into a 14 day cruise. This all because Carnival planned poorly and their guests had to wait until 1130PM before we departed San Diego while provisions were being loaded, and then Carnival had the nerve to charge San Diego sales tax on alcohol while we waited in port to depart, missing the departure from San Diego . (totally unacceptable).
It was not my fault Carnival had issues, and had to depart late. Carnival did not even apologize for the inconvenience nor did the acknowledge they did anything wrong.
Second: my luggage never came up to the room, if my husband did not visit guest services and find my luggage sitting there, I am not sure when I would have received it.
Third: I have always believed that a person who gets a good night sleep is a happier person. My side of the bed was so uncomfortable I have been sleeping on the couch, the steward put two egg crate foam covers to try to help the situation, he went out of his way to make us comfortable. However, I spent the entire trip sleeping on the couch.
Fourth: Laundry. We tried to use the laundry facility on the seventh floor, the floor in which are room was on only to find out both washer machines were out of order. This was only after putting the laundry and soap in the machine. We were advised after calling guest services to use another floor, we went to the first floor to find both machines working but once again after putting are clothes, soap, softener and money in the machine, it would not work, we had to set the washer to warm (It was actually HOT) we found out too late and several pieces of clothing were ruined. The machine worked at such a slow pace it took over an hour after the other machine stopped. We had to reset the dryer twice at $3. 00 each time to find our clothes were still wet; this was a very small load. (Over four hours of our time wasted to do two small loads of laundry).
We chocked this up to a bad experience and decided to give it another chance on the last day in Hawaii. One machine was working on the seventh floor. We put our clothes in soap, (1/2 box) softer and money everything was looking good until we open the washer machine to find all our clothing stained with soap. We had to run the washer again with only water to remove the soap stains.
This ship was in dry dock for two weeks, exactly what was done? Clearly there were no fixes to the inside of the ship. The person responsible for the laundry room told us that they report broken equipment daily. (This should have been addressed and fixed while sitting in port in Hawaii).
It is unacceptable to have a ship with over two thousand people on a 15 day cruise and have over three quarters of the laundry equipment knowingly inoperable.
Furthermore, the waterslide which was advertised for this cruise inoperable the entire cruise.
The cover for the indoor pool broke making it very uncomfortable/unable to use on the cold days at sea.
The entertainment was fair at best, except for the dance/music shows performed in the Pharaoh's Palace, they were excellent.
To summarize my experience on this ship: Let me say the spirit is a beautiful ship. Once reaching Hawaii it was beautiful, the staff was very pleasant and helpful. For the most part if you ordered room service or ate in the dining room the food was good, however the buffets when returning from tours were so bad we chose to eat off the ship while docked. The rooms were spacious and well kept. The sleeping accommodations, specifically the bed was horrible. The laundry room was deplorable as well as unacceptable. The water slide was nonfunctional for the entire cruise. The indoor pool was inoperable on the cold sea days returning to San Diego. The entertainment except for the show held in the Pharaoh's Place, (specifically dance and music) were at best fair.
But, the fact that Carnival seemed to have no remorse they never showed concern or even apologize for the inconveniences they caused, again due to poor operational planning ,poor up-keep and poor follow-up. No fault of his/her customers.
When we followed up with carnival cruise they told us that they could leave dock when ever they wanted and that we should have brought our damaged clothes to guest services, and that we were due nothing, clearly not even an apology.
This totally unacceptable on so many levels.